The Ongoing Debate Over the Use of Stem Cells Essay

1317 Words6 Pages
In the past two decades, many technological and scientific advances have been made in order to make life easier for many people who suffer from cancer, disease and sickness. Among these advances there is something revolutionary called stem cells. Stem cells can help restore and regenerate almost all parts of the human body such as the heart, kidney, liver, and many other organs. Although stem cells offer a lot, there are many views against and for stem cells, and among these views lies the debate of whether stem cells should be legalized or not (NIH 2). Stem cells offer exciting new opportunities in the field of science such as regenerating human body parts, but many people are still debating whether or not the use of stem cells is…show more content…
In order to get stem cells from embryos, the embryo must be destroyed, and many people view this as killing a human, making it immoral. These embryonic cells can be given different tasks such as making a specific organ, and this is how different body parts can be made. Stem cells have been published in newspapers since 1998, but no institute or company invested money or time into stem cells until 2001, when the Canadian Institute of Health Sciences decided to fund the research of stem cells. Stem cells have three general properties, which are being capable of dividing and renewing for long periods, they have to be unspecialized, and they have to be able to give rise to specialized cells (NIH 3). Stem cells are unspecialized cells in embryos and umbilical cords that can be modified using signals in order to make specialized cells which then have the ability form into various different body parts such as livers, kidneys, hearts, and other major organs. The process of when an unspecialized stem cell turns into a specialized stem cell is called differentiation (NIH 1). In order for unspecialized stem cells to become specialized, one of the two types of signals should be used. The first signal is called internal. Internal signals occur inside a cell by its own genes, which are encoded on strands of DNA. The second signal is called external and this is possible with external support such as chemicals, physical contact, or other molecules in the
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